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Sweet Slice of Success

Category: Imports

US consumers acquire a taste for imported mangoes …

Ever mangled a mango?

Our own first attempt at slicing and dicing a mango was a fail. But the fact that we tried at all was a sweet success for the National Mango Board, which is on a mission to market the tropical fruit to US consumers.

We’ve since mastered the technique, thanks to a how-to video from chef Allen Susser (on the website of the Ecuador Mango Foundation) – and are doing our small part to boost US consumer sales volumes, up 117% between 2007 and 2011, by the NMB’s reckoning.

The growth in demand is part of a larger, long-term trend we’ve written about before (Fresh Outlook): Where the US was a net exporter of produce in the 1970s, an importer and exporter in near equal proportions through the 1990s, it has been a net importer since then. Demand for fresh fruits, even in the dead of winter, and a growing taste for tropical fruits, drive the trend.

With US domestic production of mangoes pretty much limited to southern Florida, more than 90% of the fruit consumed here is imported. Mexico is far and away the top source, exporting 247,394,904 kilograms June 2011 through May 2012, but its peak season runs from March to August. As Fall begins in the north, shipments from Mexico slow and trade from south of the equator picks up.

Which Southern Hemisphere country takes over the lead from Mexico through the north’s cold weather months? Not one, but three, each in turn – as the charted trade data shows – starting with Brazil in early autumn, followed by Ecuador at year’s end, and Peru surging ahead in January. Guatemala rises with Mexico in the Spring.

Based on total shipments June 2011 through May 2012, Ecuador, with 32,402,532 kg, is the second-ranked country source. We researched the US import data for the top players in this trade:

With the Datamyne Profiles feature we were able to drill down still further for details about the consignees. We found, for instance, this list of suppliers of top-ranked US importer, Amazon Produce Network (note that these are suppliers for all imported produce during the rolling year from April 2011 through May 2012).

The Datamyne Profiles rolling 12-month summaries of individual consignee’s trade include total shipments, products, countries of trade, and ports of entry. Commercial background info, user reviews, links to more resources (such as Jigsaw) are also in the Profiles’ mix. You can request a free demo of the Profiles feature here.

Date posted: August 8, 2012

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